It was raining buckets in Singapore yesterday. The whole city-state cast a gloomy face, with puddles of water everywhere and dark clouds till the end of the horizon. In the midst of all this, we set out to see the Chinese New year light-up and opening ceremony. It wasn’t a good start, right from Joo Chiat Place. The rain-gods were already putting up a clear sign as to how the rest of the evening would turn out.
This is not the first time that I was visiting Chinatown, and it has become one of my favorite spots in Singapore. But today, Chinatown was crazy crowded like never before, with the number of people who had come to usher in the year of the horse. The shops along New Bridge road and Eu Tong Sen road, were packed to the hilt.
And everywhere, you could see the 2000 giant ancient coins, left hanging over the roads, stretching almost entirely over Chinatown. I was told that the whole stretch was created by 55 artists, and took over 15000 man hours to put together.
But the centrepiece of the whole place, were the giant horse-shaped lanterns, signifying the Chinese year of the horse. They represent this year’s festival theme, galloping to prosperity.